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Anya

Celiac And Magnesium Defficiency

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I have a 3-year old daughter who has been glutenfree for over 1 year now. Celiac was suspected as an underlying condition for chronic constipation followed by recurring c.diff infections for over 9 months. The Celiac gene is also present. Blood work was negative, she is however igA deficient.

Her situation improved significantly on a glutenfree diet, no more c.diff infections, strange emotional behavior resolved and we went from 1% to 10% in weight within the year. About 6 months ago we put her on a supplement called "Calm" which contains magnesium. We started this supplement because she was hyperactive. Our pediatrician approved the supplement and told us that we could give her the dose that was recommended for 4-year olds. We have recently eliminated the supplement because we suspected it was causing painful burning bowel movements. As soon as we eliminated it, the hyperactivity and lack of attention was back. So, clearly the magnesium has a positive impact on behavior.

I read some reports on magnesium deficiency being quite common in Celiacs. Here is a possible explanation: "Dietary magnesium may be absorbed along the entire length of the small intestines but most absorption occurs in the middle section, the jejunum. In celiac disease, malabsorption is caused by the binding of magnesium to unabsorbed fat, which pass together out of the body. If steatorrhea (fat malabsorption) continues on a gluten-free diet, magnesium and certain other minerals such as calcium will not be adequately absorbed." Source: http://glutenfreeworks.com/blog/2010/04/16/magnesium-deficiency-in-celiac-disease-common-and-dangerous/.

My daughter has shown fat malabsorption (even on a glutenfree diet), but our doctor said it is quite common in toddlers and left it at that. There is clearly a problem with magnesium.

Any input on the subject of magnesium, hyperactivity and celiac would be highly appreciated.

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Your message got me to look up some information that was on my 'to-do list'! I have bad reactions to MSG and similar substances (it appears they're called free glutamates, as opposed to bound glutamates). In my recent research, it appears that magnesium is needed to help one in processing MSG. I checked my multivitamin, and it's actually pretty low in magnesium. On my 'to-do list' was to find food sources of the mineral, so I can increase my intake, if possible, without having to get a separate supplement.

My suggestion would be to double-check for MSG or similar items in the ingredients that your daughter eats (it's everywhere!), and you can find a list of 'msg aliases' on this site: http://www.truthinlabeling.org/

And here are some links for natural / food sources of magnesium, it looks like it won't be too difficult for me to add to my diet, hopefully your daughter likes some of the foods listed, which also includes some gluten-free grains!:

http://ods.od.nih.go...eets/magnesium/ [National Institutes of Health]

http://www.health.go...l/appendixB.htm [uSDA]

Hopefully others have more specifics for you too!

Edited by ciamarie

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I appreciate your response and good point about the "free glutamate". I am very familiar with it, since I am also highly sensitive to "free glutamate". I am definitely avoiding all of the "contains free glutamate" ingredients, but have gotten a bit more relaxed about the "may contain free glutamate" ingredients. It is extremely hard to be glutenfree and also avoid the "maybes". My daughter definitely ate some pretzels from Glutino that contains "yeast extract", which contains free glutamate. How long would it take for that to clear from the body? In my case, it causes a reaction, but then seems to be gone.

I did not know that you need magnesium to process free glutamate. So, thank you very much for sharing that.Thank you also for the list of high magnesium foods, I will make an effort to include more of those. However, our problem is that too much magnesium seems to cause loose stools and even diarrhea. It seems like she needs a certain amount of magnesium to be calm, but that amount causes the painful stools. I would think that it does not matter whether the magnesium comes from a supplement or from natural food?

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I think that generally, having it come from food would be preferred, because then it contains other elements that we aren't aware of, that are still beneficial for us. And those other things may work in a sort of synergy with the magnesium (in this case) to reduce any issues that magnesium on it's own may be causing. Plus there may be other elements in a supplement such as different fillers that cause issues, that the actual food doesn't have.

No guarantees of course, but that's my take on it.

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I've been researching a bit more about magnesium supplements, trying to decide which one may be best for me. I thought I'd do a new reply to this thread with some of what I've discovered. Do you know what form of magnesium (Mg) was in the supplement your daughter was taking? Apparently Mg oxide is not good at all as far as absorption by the body. Some of the chelates are better, such as Mg taurate, malate, or citrate and I've also seen glycinate.

Here are a couple of quotes from a good web discussion I found about absorption.

Basically magnesium is a metal, and in its pure form, it is not soluble in water.

Mixed with various other molecules or compounds(chelates), it becomes more

accessible to the body and can be used properly.

It can be mixed with an inorganic molecule:

magnesium oxide

magnesium sulfate

magnesium chloride

OR it can be mixed with an organic compound--usually an amino acid--

which then makes it more absorbable..These are called chelates.

The chelate weighs more than the magnesium and hence the total actual percentage of magnesium itself is lower compared to the weight of the mixture.

The general ratio of magnesium to total chelate weight varies from 8% (for the taurate) to about 12% for some others. One guideline is size. If the tablet label for a chelate is confusing and does not give "elemental" values,

and the tablet is small...don't expect much magnesium. For example magnesium malate is 152mg of magnesium elemental, and 848 mg of malic acid to give a total weight of 1000mg on the label. And it is a huge tablet reflecting that ratio.

And:

One sign that you are not getting your magnesium from your chosen product is loose stools or frank diarrhea. That means the magnesium is remaining in the GI tract, and creating a laxative effect. Either change products or lower the dose used. However, many people do not get diarrhea, especially if they are prone to constipation. Sometimes, they just seem "normal" instead. Others who are more prone to looseness will notice any little extra magnesium.

Magnesium citrate is a laxative..but there is a threshold, for each person according to dose.

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We supplement with concentrace trace mineral drops. As far as add/ADHD, my kids and I have overcome that with the gaps diet.

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Thank you so much for sharing this! This is great information. The supplement we used to give her (called Calm for Kids) is magnesium citrate. No surprise we have the loose painful stools. I picked up another calcium/magnesium chewable which is magnesium oxide and apparently useless. So, I need to look for magnesium lactate.

My daughter is definitely low in magnesium, when we took her off completely for a few days, we had even eye blinking/twitching starting and she would open and close her hands all the time. There is a HUGE difference in behavior when on or off magnesium. We have been desperately trying to find a solution to this vicious cycle of needing more magnesium, but too much causing painful loose stools. At this point, my daughter is withholding every bowel movement and is so afraid of it that she starts sweating. When we had the loose stools starting, we thought that the c.diff infection was coming back, we had no idea that the magnesium was causing it. I have tried to include magnesium rich foods in the diet, but our problem is that she just doesn't eat. We also have fat malabsorption, which seems to contribute to the problem.

Thank you so much again for all the information, this is incredibly helpful. Please keep me posted if you find a good supplement.

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We supplement with concentrace trace mineral drops. As far as add/ADHD, my kids and I have overcome that with the gaps diet.

Thank you so much for your response. I will research the GAPS diet more. I see that it is based on the SCD which I am familiar with. The trace minerals are a great idea as well.

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I found a magnesium that does not have a laxative effect on me, from Angstrom Minerals. As I understand it, most magnesiums cause diarrhea because they are only about 10% absorbable. The Angstrom Minerals are almost 100% absorbed. It definitely works for me--totally takes care of my nightly leg cramps.

http://www.angstrom-mineral.com/angstrom-sized-minerals.html

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I found a magnesium that does not have a laxative effect on me, from Angstrom Minerals. As I understand it, most magnesiums cause diarrhea because they are only about 10% absorbable. The Angstrom Minerals are almost 100% absorbed. It definitely works for me--totally takes care of my nightly leg cramps.

http://www.angstrom-mineral.com/angstrom-sized-minerals.html

Thank you for posting this. They do not list what form of magnesium it is, but I will contact them.

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Here is a very good article on magnesium I found from the NIH:

http://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/magnesium

It states that too much magnesium can have the same effects than a magnesium deficiency, which is interesting. Anyhow, I see now that my daughter has been on a way too high dose, because our pediatrician told us that we could give her the 4-year old dose of the supplement "Calm for Kids". We have now taken her off completely and increased her necessary magnesium uptake through foods and using a multi-vitamin that contains small amounts of magnesium lactate. She is now doing great. We have our energetic and happy toddler back.

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